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Mom Congress Update

April 24, 2010

Momentum is building.

Here is the little piece in the local paper.

Here is the link to all of the amazing moms I’ll be working with while in Washington.

I have a lot of fear around leaving my children for two and a half days. I have never been away from them for so long. I have no reason to worry, as I have the best step-in caregivers in the world taking over for me.  Of course, as uber-planner I have lists, schedules, and back up plans in place. I have been prepping them both as best I can. Separation is loaded for both of them for different reasons. But, they also need practice handling their feelings, and learning the strategies that help them to cope. Whatever I forget to predict, and plan for is OK too. How we deal with the unexpected is a good skill to learn. Right?  Gulp.

If I am given fifteen seconds to shine there, what I hope to get across to the delegates, and the assembled guests (including Arne) would be this question; How are we reaching out to the parents of children who did not feel that school worked for them? How can we help them imagine a different outcome for their children? If our mission is to look at how to increase parental involvement in education, is that not an imperative starting point? There a few million other issues I feel passionate about.  Considering my area of expertise (as an educator, multi-racial family advocate, adoptive parent, and honorary mom of hue), focusing on ways to connect with parents who feel disenfranchised or disconnected from education in any way is where I hope to impact the discussion.

Now its your turn: If you had could have your say on the topic, what would you add? Our work, as I understand it, is to look at how to deepen familial involvement in education. What are your insights? What has worked, or not worked for you and your family? What brings you to the classroom table so to speak, or chases you away?

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. She Started It permalink
    April 24, 2010 1:55 am

    Go gettum, Tiger. Don’t worry about your boys. They need you in Washington.

    We have a lot of parental involvement at our school, and the parents who aren’t involved are those who have a language/cultural barriers, so we’re just really lucky.

    Our biggest problem is the school budget next year. Class sizes are exploding. What I want is an Education Bailout. If the banks can have money when they’re struggling, why can’t we?

    • April 24, 2010 2:22 am

      Glad to hear so many parents involved at your school–and love the idea of an Education Bailout!

      How are the parents with the language/cultural barriers at your school being supported? Are translators readily available? There are so many areas of expertise that I lack when it comes to cultural barriers parents may be up against re: kids educational experience. How are we (schools/teachers/other families) reaching out to these families too? Thanks for jumping to the mic here Mama!

  2. Carey permalink
    April 24, 2010 3:23 am

    I love reading your blog! As a former teacher (now stay at home mom), the biggest barrier I saw in the “working class” school where I taught, was that parents did not feel they knew best for their children. They assumed teachers were educated in all aspects of student life. And I often saw teachers and administrators basically bully parents who were working class. I really think it is necessary for communities to have advocates for parents to take to conferences, etc. And advocates to encourage parents to be involoved with their child’s education. If the parents do not have the confidence to support their child, someone needs to step in and help.

  3. michelle permalink
    April 24, 2010 6:03 pm

    One of the [many] challenges that we are facing in our elementary school is integration of second language. In Austin we have a mandate for the schools to have at least one bi-lingual classroom per grade and I believe eventually all classes will be English-Spanish. The teachers are scared because many on them do not speak Spanish. This is a job threat. How can we expect all teachers to be Bi-Lingual?
    Right now, for the one Bi-Lingual class per grade, students are almost hand picked- meaning the more advanced students will benefit. The students [not all but most] that are currently Bi-lingual of Latino descent are forced into the English only classroom due to below average academic performance.
    Then through in the special education or special needs students into the problem. How do we make sure these children reach their goals and still have the opportunity to learn a second language?

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